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Major transport projects in Bridgend unlikely to go ahead in near future

The Penprysg Bridge In Pencoed (Pic: Lewis Smith LDR)

A NUMBER of key transport projects targeted for the Bridgend area are looking unlikely to be completed in the near future, following a report heard by council bosses this week.

The discussions which took place at a monthly cabinet meeting on October 17 provided members with an update on the council’s current and future strategic transport projects that have been planned for a number of areas across the borough.

However, it looks as though some of them won’t be going ahead any time soon with a number of short-listed schemes currently said to have, “no specific funding or budget in place.”

While the short-listed projects will be included in any future discussions with the Welsh Government, Cardiff Capital Region and rail authorities, only two of them are currently set to be delivered in the 2023-24 financial year, in the form of an active travel route in Ynysawdrew, and the development of a new bus station in Porthcawl.

It means a number of projects are currently no closer to becoming a reality, such as the Penprysg Road Bridge development- where the council planned to use Levelling Up funding to close the Pencoed level crossing and widen the Penprysg Bridge, along with proposed upgrades to Junction 36 off the M4, which is said to have “reached its operational capacity limit.”

Plans for a new park and ride and bus interchange at Maesteg Ewenny Road railway station are also waiting for funding before they can progress, with other schemes such as the long-standing proposal for a Brackla Halt Railway station based on the south Wales mainline on hold with “no current TFW proposals to take this project further.”

Members at the meeting also heard how the local authority had a wish list of 16 walking and cycling projects that would be included in any future bids for Welsh Government active travel funding in the coming years.

The report read: “Cabinet approved the current list of strategic transport schemes in December, 2021 and by way of this report Cabinet is advised of an updated list of proposed projects and schemes.

“It is essential that a list of schemes is agreed in order that they may be submitted as part of any current or future transport funding bids and also in the event that surplus funding is available from Welsh Government towards the end of the financial year.”

Officers at the meeting highlighted that many of these proposals were still only aspirational projects for the council, and said it was important to be “bold and ambitious” when it came to the transport landscape, with the need to identify these projects now even if the prospect of funding is some way off.